Atlanta Falcons Need the Attitude and Swagger of the 1991 Team
The Atlanta Falcons are releasing a video that revisits the 1991 team dubbed the Rudest Team in NFL History. NFL Films recognized the 30th anniversary of this squad as well. It was one of the most in your face, win at all costs, 2 Legit 2 Quit teams in franchise history.
Every player on the current roster should watch the video and talk to some who lived it. Unfortunately, the 2021 team is a shadow of that group of men. Still, it shows how quickly losing can be turned to winning with just a few adjustments, changes the Falcons need to make to salvage the season.
Falcons Need a Prime Time Attitude Adjustment
Deion Sanders led that team with his outlandish swagger, overflowing confidence and incredible skills. Neon Deion, the one who earned the nickname Prime Time was the face of the franchise. He arrived in 1989, drafted fifth overall from the Florida State Seminoles, “I come from a school that had only lost two games in two years,” said Sanders to NFL Films. “I come here, I understand I was going to be bad situation being drafted so high, but the attitudes had to change.”
"“If you just lay your heart out and give it your all, they (Falcons fans) gonna ride with you, man.” -Deion Sanders to NFL Films"
Despite the losing, Sanders acted like the Falcons were the favorite in every game. That bravado rubbed off on the entire organization, and the fan base loved him for it.
You can’t teach an old dog new tricks, and Matt Ryan is not Deion Sanders. However, a new guy on the team has a lot of similarities – Kyle Pitts. The fourth overall pick in the last draft has earned his nickname, it’s not Prime Time, but the Unicorn is equally tone setting. Pitts has been phenomenal in his rookie season but could use some Sanders swagger, not only to help his game but elevate the players around him.
The current coaches are not going to be confused with Jerry Glanville. None of them leave tickets at the gate for Elvis Presley or invite music stars to be on the field and in the locker room. But, Glanville was about much more than that. He had the attitude that resonated from the sidelines. In 1991, Glanville changed the team’s colors from that old red and white uniform that had become synonymous with losing to black.
Falcons’ Smith Could Use Glanville Swagger
The Falcons embraced the bad boy, bad attitude, don’t care behavior, and challenged other teams to prove them wrong. Arthur Smith, by all accounts a nice guy, doesn’t emulate that kind of attitude. The rookie coach is the opposite of Glanville; maybe not a bad thing on some fronts, but some pointers from the legendary coach might help.
When Deion’s Falcons were embarrassed by the Dallas Cowboys 41-17 during the 1992 season, he lifted benches over his head and slammed them down. That’s the passion that made Sanders a fan favorite. When this year’s team lost 43-3 to the Cowboys in Week 10, there wasn’t any reaction that remotely compared to that. Many things have changed in 30 years, but the will to win remains the same, and this year’s team can learn a lot from that historic squad.